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AMC to close nation's first megaplex

May 27, 2010 |  5:42 pm

Cue the closing credits for the nation's oldest megaplex.

AMC Entertainment said Thursday that its subsidiary company chose not renew its lease for AMC The Grand 24 in Dallas.

Built in 1995, the theater holds the distinction of being the first megaplex -- a theater with 14 auditoriums or more and stadium seating -- in the U.S. 

AMC said in a statement it could not reach an agreement on lease terms with the property owner, Kansas City, Mo.-based real investment trust Entertainment Properties Trust.

"It's disappointing that we have not come to terms on a historical, and to us, a somewhat sentimental property,'' AMC Chief Executive Gerry Lopez said in a statement.

"Throughout the past 15 years at AMC The Grand 24, we made history and developed many friends in the community,'' said Mark McDonald, AMC's vice president of global development. "We will miss them."

Kansas, Mo.-based AMC, the nation's second-largest theater circuit after Regal Entertainment Group, recently acquired "substantially all" of the assets of Chicago-based Kerasotes Showplace Theatres, the nation's sixth-largest circuit, with 95 theaters in mostly Midwestern markets.

-- Richard Verrier